His Holiness

https://i0.wp.com/www.catholicsupply.com/pope/PopeBenedictXVIPoster1.jpgI have no problem with the phrase “His Holiness the Dalai Lama”, but Maledict is just a nasty old man who hates gay people and uppity women.

On 21 December, he attacked trans people. People dispute the idea that they have a nature, given by their bodily identity, which serves as a defining element of the human being. They deny their nature and decide that it is not something previously given to them, but that they make it for themselves. According to the biblical creation account, being created by God as male and female pertains to the essence of the human creature. This duality is an essential aspect of what being human is all about, as ordained by God. Full text here, thanks to New Ways Ministry.

This starts as a criticism of Simone de Beauvoir: “One is not born a woman, one becomes so”. Society moulds women, and women may mould ourselves otherwise. For the Pope, God creates the woman’s role. Vatican Radio This tiny header image from Vatican Radio illustrates it perfectly, a happy normal family under a huge, looming Pope. For those who fit the mould, this is wonderful; for those of us who do not, it is Hell.

In those situations where homosexual unions have been legally recognized or have been given the legal status and rights belonging to marriage, clear and emphatic opposition is a duty. Full text here. I got it from Wikiquote: it does not take long to find the Pope’s blathers on people he does not like. This insane, one size fits all morality is throughout his writings and speechifyings. Yes I had a penis, but the thought that this defined me as a human being shows a complete misunderstanding of what it is to be human.

That is the understanding of Benny I get from my culture, but also from Vatican radio and his addresses at the most important times of the Christian year: a wicked old fool who hates gay people. But- who believes this stuff? Why does he have the allegiance of most Catholics?

The best analogy I can give is that of Newton. Newton explained how the planets went round the Sun, and how apples fell from trees, and his theories fitted observable data until the late 19th century. And then there were only the slightest variations, which might be faults in the data rather than the theories. Then Einstein explained the variations.

A majority of people are straight, and even a majority can just-about fit Benny’s prescriptions. Outliers like me need to be crushed and twisted to fit them, beyond recognition, and no-one fits them perfectly, but many might not notice the gaps because of the sense of safety these rules give them. They give the illusion of understanding the world.

De Beauvoir is right, there is far too much variation to fit these old moulds, but the framework may work for some. Two people who vow to love each other life long, both of whom give it the work required and mature together, may even benefit from it. They would buy posters like the one illustrated, from Catholic Supplies.

8 thoughts on “His Holiness

  1. I don’t believe that he does have the allegiance of most Catholics, actually. Most of my Catholic friends say that they weren’t happy when he was chosen and still don’t like him. Only the most traditionalist Catholics, the ones who want to return to families of ten kids and Latin Mass, really support the pope. Since the majority of lay Catholics also support gay marriage, I suspect there are a whole lot of people ignoring old Benny.

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    • Mmm. There are one billion Catholics worldwide. 350,000 demonstrated in Paris against equal marriage. A friend’s wife wanted to be a priest, which almost drove her to the Anglicans, but even in the UK and US there are Catholics like Rick Santorum. Thirteen million Catholics in Uganda won’t have a majority for gay rights.

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  2. YAY! – Dear Clare

    Do not give up your power so easily. Leave the bigots alone and just have some fun today. The sun is shining here, and I can hear the birds singing. Fancy a walk?

    xx 🙂

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  3. It’s amazing how the papacy has endured down the centuries. A man claiming to be the son of the only god comes with a message urging people to give up all worldly wealth, and the spearhead of the resulting religion is dripping with gold and property. Thank your lucky stars you’re not represented in the posters!

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    • There is so much in Christianity which makes it a useful ideology for the Roman Empire, and the Russian Empire, and an agent of colonialism in Africa; and makes it intolerant of deviation from narrow orthodoxy; and produces hierarchy; and yet none of these things are essential to it.

      The phrase Jesus used was “Son of man”, and why should we not take him literally?

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    • Look at that picture. The slight cringe of the head, but the eyes glaring upwards as if he thinks “I’m going to get you and you won’t see it coming, sucker”, the mouth open as if he is not quite all there- not a smile, exactly- and this is a picture picked out by his fans

      We avoid taxing churches because we think they do good, but must evaluate the cost-benefit.

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